Ascent of Mont du lac des Marais on 2011-12-03

Climber: Gabriel Couët

Others in Party:Éric Deschênes
Valérie Marcon
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, December 3, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mont du lac des Marais
    Elevation:1039 m / 3409 ft

Ascent Trip Report

After our ascent of mont René-Richard, we still had the full afternoon before us. We had plenty of time to go and bag mont du lac des Marais so we packed our gear in Éric's car and left along highway 381 towards the junction that would serve as our second trailhead a few kilometers north. It was unclear, when we reached it, that it was what we were looking for so we kept going a little bit. We soon realized it was the right place and turned back. After parking and putting the packs on, we left along the logging road, around 12:50pm.

It was chaotic in the first hundred meters, with a lot of logging damage. Further up it became much nicer with occasional trenches sprouting from the road. The going was easy and we steadily gained altitude. Éric and I took a short lead over the girls and we spotted a jumble of footprints in the snow at a junction ahead. When we reached it, we posited it had to be moose fighting. It is unusual as mating season is mostly over by now, but I guess it can still happen. We spotted more prints all along the road and they looked very fresh. There were droppings and urine that still had a smell to them so we knew there were some moose very close by.

We kept going and when the road started circling around the bowl-like valley we had to get past, we heard some branches snap. Right away we spotted our third moose of the day, that was running away from us uphill on our right. I knew from studying the route beforehand that we might cross his way again so we kept alert.

We soon reached the top of the first bump leading to the true summit. We could now see our goal and tried to figure out if we had to start bushwhacking now. A straight line would bring us down into a slight dip with more tree cover so we decided to follow the road for a while; we thought we could see it faintly going very high on the mountain. It was the right choice as the road split up directly on the col and there was an old logging trail remnant going in the right direction.

Stéphanie was getting tired and decided to stay behind. Valérie, Éric, and I went by ourselves past what we thought was the end of the road and surprisingly found that there was a good herd path going uphill. It was constant and easy to follow and we lost it only about 150m from the summit. From there we bushwhacked our way through very easy ground and reached expansive clearings that were the high spot. We tried figuring out which was higher but failed. We admired the amazing views from this summit for a few minutes, too pictures, and backtracked down to Stéphanie.

When we reached her, she told us she had been surprised by yet another moose. It might have been the same one we had spotted earlier, but this is unsure.

The way down was uneventful and we reached the car around 3:30pm. From there we drove back home stopping on the way in Baie-Saint-Paul for a quick snack.

An interesting rock formation dug up from under the past tree cover.

Most probably moose fighting footprints.

The weather systems were cleanly separated. As soon as we hit the valley, we were engulfed in greyness.

Mont du lac des Marais as seen from high on the approach trail.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:288 m / 948 ft
    Elevation Loss:288 m / 948 ft
    Distance:8.6 km / 5.3 mi
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack, Snow on Ground
    Weather:Cold, Breezy, Clear
Clear skies with low wind
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:274 m / 899 ft
    Extra Loss:14 m / 49 ft
    Distance:4.3 km / 2.7 mi
    Route:Logging road, open grounds
    Trailhead:Road 381 along petit lac Barley  779 m / 2559 ft
    Time Up:1 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Elevation Loss:274 m / 899 ft
    Extra Gain:14 m / 49 ft
    Distance:4.3 km / 2.7 mi
    Route:Open grounds, logging road
    Trailhead:Road 381 along petit lac Barley  779 m / 2559 ft
    Time Down:1 Hours 15 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Gabriel Couët
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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